New Lebanon’s Cunnagin Gets the Win at Phoenix Bass Fishing League Event at Ohio River-Tanners Creek

Oxford’s Thome Tops Strike King Co-Angler Division

LAWRENCEBURG, Ind. (July 1, 2024) – Boater Jamie Cunnagin of New Lebanon, Ohio, caught a five-bass limit weighing 12 pounds, 2 ounces, Saturday to win the MLF Phoenix Bass Fishing League (BFL) Presented by T-H Marine on the Ohio River at Tanners Creek. The tournament was the third event of the season for the BFL Buckeye Division. Cunnagin earned $5,082 for his victory.

The Ohio River is a great place to break out classic shallow-water bass fishing tactics, and Cunnagin is a local stick who knows all the tricks.

“I basically threw a spinnerbait and a (Yamamoto) Senko most of the time,” he said. “I fished 2 feet or less most of the day. I fish down there a lot, and I kind of do the same thing usually.”

Cunnagin has some favorite creeks that he runs when he fishes out of Tanners Creek, and that’s exactly where he went for most of the tournament.

“It was just one of those days that what I was doing and where I was fishing they bit,” he said. “I just happened to stumble across a couple big fish. I actually came back in an hour early. I thought I had around 11 pounds at the time, and I had one small fish that I needed to get rid of – like a 1.16. I just went back in Tanners and milled around with 40 other boats in there the last hour. There’s a tree in there that I waited on a couple of guys to pull off of, and I actually flipped a (Zoom) Brush Hog in that tree and caught one like 2 pounds. I culled that fish (the 1.16) out, and that put me over 12 pounds.”

The majority of Cunnagin’s fish came on a 3/8-ounce spinnerbait. He was primarily targeting wood, but also caught fish on rock banks and in between pieces of cover during the cloudy hours of early morning.

“I rolled,” he added. “I was moving. I covered a lot of water in a short period of time. I had a limit in probably 35, 40 minutes.

“I just ran creeks that I like, that I feel comfortable fishing.”

The top 11 boaters finished the tournament:

1st:        Jamie Cunnagin, New Lebanon, Ohio, five bass, 12-2, $5,082
2nd:       Nick Ryan, Cleves, Ohio, five bass, 10-11, $2,019
3rd:       Hunter Colwell, Sidney, Ohio, five bass, 10-3, $1,845 (includes $500 Phoenix MLF Contingency Bonus)
4th:        Michael Nesbitt, St. Paris, Ohio, five bass, 8-15, $942
5th:        Chris Martinkovic, Hamilton, Ohio, five bass, 8-3, $1,107
6th:        Brian Campbell, Oxford, Ohio, five bass, 8-2, $740
7th:        James Rebholz, Morrow, Ohio, five bass, 7-13, $673
8th:        Ryan Hipsher, Hillsboro, Ohio, five bass, 7-6, $606
9th:        Matthew Strickland, Portsmouth, Ohio, five bass, 7-5, $538
10th:     Seth Fricke, Oxford, Ohio, five bass, 7-4, $447
10th:     Brandon Smith, Mason, Ohio, five bass, 7-4, $447

Complete results can be found at

Cunnagin caught a bass that weighed 4 pounds, 5 ounces, and earned the Berkley Big Bass Boater award of $545.

Austin Thome of Oxford, Ohio, won the Strike King co-angler division and $2,019 Saturday, after bringing five bass to the scale that totaled 9 pounds, 9 ounces.

The top 10 Strike King co-anglers finished:

1st:        Austin Thome, Oxford, Ohio, five bass, 9-9, $2,019
2nd:       Jeff Moorman, Liberty Township, Ohio, three bass, 8-5, $1,114
2nd:       Jeffrey Smith, West Chester, Ohio, five bass, 8-5, $842
4th:        Adam Radovic, Brecksville, Ohio, four bass, 6-6, $471
5th:        Steve Sorrell, Beavercreek, Ohio, three bass, 5-7, $387
5th:        Dan Goforth, Monroe, Ohio, two bass, 5-7, $387
7th:        Bill Meyers, Urbana, Ohio, two bass, 5-1, $336
8th:        Dylan Grace, Scottsburg, Ind., four bass, 4-15, $386
8th:        Jacob Alltop, Lewistown, Ohio, four bass, 4-15, $286
10th:     Scott Standafer, Felicity, Ohio, three bass, 4-12, $235

Jeff Moorman of Liberty Township, Ohio, earned the Berkley Big Bass co-angler award of $272, catching a bass that weighed in at 5 pounds, 13 ounces – the largest co-angler catch of the day.

After three events, Sean Wieda of Alexandria, Kentucky, leads the Fishing Clash Buckeye Division Angler of the Year (AOY) race with 735 points, while Adam Radovic of Brecksville, Ohio, leads the Fishing Clash Buckeye Division Co-Angler of the Year race with 707 points.

The next event for BFL Buckeye Division anglers will be held Aug. 3, at Lake Erie in Sandusky, Ohio. To register for the event as a boater or a co-angler, visit or call (270)-252-1000.

The top 45 boaters and co-anglers in the region based on point standings, along with the five tournament winners of each qualifying event, will qualify for the Oct. 3-5 BFL Regional tournament on Kerr Lake in Henderson, South Carolina. Boaters will fish for a top award of $60,000, including a new Phoenix 819 Pro with a 200-horsepower Mercury or Suzuki outboard and $10,000, while co-anglers will compete for a top award of $50,000, including a new Phoenix 819 Pro with a 200-horsepower Mercury or Suzuki outboard.

The 2024 Phoenix BFL Presented by T-H Marine is a 24-division circuit devoted to weekend anglers, with 128 events throughout the season, five qualifying tournaments in each division. The top 45 boaters and Strike King co-anglers from each division, along with the five qualifying event winners, will advance to one of six BFL Regional tournaments where they are competing to finish in the top six, which then qualifies them for one of the longest-running championships in all of competitive bass fishing – the BFL All-American.

Proud sponsors of the 2024 MLF Phoenix Bass Fishing League Presented by T-H Marine include: 7Brew, Abu Garcia, B&W Trailer Hitches, Berkley, BUBBA, E3, Epic Baits, Fishing Clash, General Tire, GSM Outdoors, Lew’s, Mercury, Mossy Oak, Onyx, Phoenix, Polaris, Power-Pole, PowerStop Brakes, REDCON1, Strike King, Suzuki, Tackle Warehouse, T-H Marine, Toyota, WIX Filters and YETI.

For complete details and updated tournament information, visit For regular Bass Fishing League updates, photos, tournament news and more, follow MLF5’s social media outlets at FacebookInstagram, and YouTube.

About Major League Fishing
Major League Fishing (MLF) is the world’s largest tournament-fishing organization, producing more than 250 events annually at some of the most prestigious fisheries in the world, while broadcasting to America’s living rooms on CBS, Discovery Channel, Outdoor Channel, CBS Sports Network, World Fishing Network and on demand on MyOutdoorTV (MOTV). Headquartered in Benton, Kentucky, the MLF roster of bass anglers includes the world’s top pros and more than 30,000 competitors in all 50 states and 17 countries. Since its founding in 2011, MLF has advanced the sport of competitive fishing through its premier television broadcasts and livestreams and is dedicated to improving the quality of life for bass through research, education, fisheries enhancement and fish care.